Tuesday, May 05, 2009
Here are three pictures of birds taken within a couple of hundred yards of our house.
Long-time readers will recall that there's now a big empty lot across the street. The building that was there was razed in preparation for building 20 very nice houses, that the builder was looking to get $800,000 apiece for. Then something happened to the housing market. You may have heard about it.
So now we have a big empty lot, with two big holes in it that have filled with water. This attracts ducks and geese.
The male mallard hung around for a few days. I'm thinking he has a sad story to tell. Must be very lonely at this time of year.
This morning I was at the computer and heard a bird call I couldn't remember hearing in this neighborhood, so went out looking for what it the world it could be. Turned out to be a common killdeer, but they're not so common in this part of Chicago. My bird book says, "Not only is it abundant and conspicuous, but its loud call compels attention." Yup.
Finally, walking home from working at the food pantry last week I spotted a really unusual sight in the city ("♫ In the city .... ♫In the city♫" [just a sneaky way to send you to my nephews' band]). One neighbor has a garden that's sort of overgrown, in a lush, Garden of Eden sort of way. As I was walking by I saw, out of the corner of my eye, a largish bird walking around in the undergrowth. Luckily I had my camera.
It's actually not in my bird book. I'm pretty sure it's an emu, though. I have no idea how it got there.
Incidentally, there are a couple of really good examples here of why my kid brother, who actually knows something about taking pictures of fauna, always focuses manually, rather than letting the camera decide to focus on -- oh, a nearby stick, say.